Our Wilton Launches Wilton Welcomes

The Our Wilton companies have joined forces with the Wilton and District Business Chamber to launch a new initiative to show thanks to service personnel past and present.

Wilton Welcomes, spearheaded by veteran’s wife Kerry Harvey, is encouraging local businesses to offer a discount or reward to serving personnel, veterans and their immediate families.

Businesses will be given a logo to display in their windows to make shoppers aware they’re part of the scheme.

The scheme is open to businesses in Wilton and surrounding towns and villages. Among those already signed up are Jas Hair, Petpals Salisbury, Simply Bluebell, Wessex Fleet, Wilton Flooring and The Mustard Agency.

Kerry is one of the team at Our Wilton creating the project at the former Erskine Barracks which will see the UK’s first purpose built campus for returning veterans.

Alongside 292 private homes being built by Redrow Homes, developer Our Enterprise will build a community based campus for service veterans with homes and a crèche for charity Our Wilton Trust, an enterprise hub for Our Wilton Community Interest Company, a care home and café .

Building work is due to begin on the first phase of the project, 44 homes for veterans to be owned by Our Wilton Trust, later this year with completion expected in 2017.

Kerry came up with idea after taking advantage of a similar scheme while she was holidaying with her husband and two daughters.

Her husband, Sergeant Gavin Harvey, lost both his legs after his vehicle was involved in an explosion in Afghanistan in August 2009.

Kerry says making veterans and serving personnel feel welcome means a great deal.

She said: “Small acts of kindness like a small discount or a free coffee can mean a huge amount to veterans, serving personnel and their families. It’s a chance for people to say thank you in their own way to those who serve their country.

“In a place like Wilton and the surrounding towns and villages, close to one of the biggest garrison communities in England, this is a really supportive thing to do.

“Not only does it show thanks to those who have served and are serving, it also recognises the families, some of whom have suffered great loss.

“It made a big difference to both Gavin and I after his incident  – someone simply acknowledging what you’ve done and been through can mean the world, especially on the bad days.”

Kerry continued: “Wilton Welcomes is all about showing appreciation simply by offering a small discount on services or goods or maybe an exclusive reward scheme.

“Once the veterans’ accommodation and campus opens in Wilton, it would be wonderful to give them a warm Wilton welcome and this is the perfect way to do it.

“I’m proud to be involved in this project and hope local businesses get on board and make Wilton a truly welcoming town.”

The scheme, being supported by Wilton Town Council, is being officially launched on 1st August 2016. To join, or for more information, please contact Kerry Harvey on admin@ourwilton.org

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